Silent PC Review is dedicated to reviews, news and information about silent computers
and components, as well as their energy efficiency and thermal performance.
Submitted by Mike Chin on Tue, 2002-06-11 11:32.
This addition to our archive of articles on dealing with the noise and heat of hard drives was made possible by the careful experiments of Philip Dayson. More insights on effective cooling of hard drives
. Hint: Neither the top nor bottom of the drive is the hottest part!
Submitted by Mike Chin on Mon, 2002-06-10 12:40.
The new 0.13 micron core AMD XP was awaited eagerly by many power-hungry but quiet-loving PC enthusiasts. Alas, initial reviews everywhere suggest the wait was for naught. While generating a bit less heat, the reduced size of the die has resulted in less contact area for heat transfer to the heatsink. The result is a very marginal 1-2° C or 7% reduction in temperature, depending on which review you read. Why didn't they adopt a heat spreader?! For links to the first reviews...
Submitted by Mike Chin on Mon, 2002-06-10 10:32.
This photo essay and review
of a Dell system by contributor Michael Hipp
appeared originally in February 2002 on his personal website. We felt it worthwhile to update and reprint here for those who are seeking ready-made quiet computer solutions. Michael's first line tells you why.
Submitted by Mike Chin on Sun, 2002-06-09 14:56.
I recently got an email from RSG Electronic about their new ATX fanless power supply. Check it out under new products. The email also said that they were working on a version with an "ATX form factor sized case too, but in a long version."
Tomas Risberg kindly asked them to send us a sample for review not long ago; perhaps you should too. It looks good; we'll see how they respond.
Submitted by Mike Chin on Thu, 2002-06-06 11:41.
Zalman has announced a new VGA heatsink targeted at GeForce4 cards at Computex Taipei. Featuring an unusual double-sided design, the VGA heatsink should allow for fanless operation of GeForce4 cards like the Ti4400. Details are still scarce and Zalman hasn't announced this on their site yet.
Submitted by Mike Chin on Wed, 2002-06-05 20:35.
This well-established company enters the North American market with a line of quality power supply units that boasts an intelligent fan controller they call S2FC. Our review of Seasonic's 300W ATX model. It's pretty quiet. :)
Submitted by Mike Chin on Tue, 2002-06-04 15:50.
A new ultra-quiet power-supply was just released at PCSilent.de.
It is a Fortron Source 300 watts model modified with a decoupled VERAX-fan. This fan uses a new technology which results in a better air-flow and less turbulences. The fan itself is thermo-controlled which ensures a low-noise-level. The noise-level of the power-supply was measured with 21db(A) which is a really low-level!
Submitted by Mike Chin on Tue, 2002-06-04 06:29.
AOpen has released a new motherboard with "vacuum tube audio output". Yes, you read that right. AOpen released a motherboard with vacuum tubes on it. One can't help but admire AOpen's willingness to experiment, but you have to wonder about the size of the potential market for this. No question vacuum tubes provide superior audio quality, but it remains to be seen how many people need that level of audio output quality in their PCs.
Submitted by Mike Chin on Mon, 2002-06-03 15:44.
Seagate has announced a new series of hard drives geared towards non-traditional markets. The U Series X drive is targeted at systems such as Xbox gaming consoles, audio jukeboxes and low-cost PCs. Utilizing only one read/write head, this drive is 25% thinner than traditional half-height drives. According to Seagate, this improves airflow within smaller systems where space is at a premium and components are often packed closely together. Utilizing the same technology found in their Barracuda cousins, Seagate quotes the U Series X drives at 2.6 bels, which is slightly higher than the 2.4 bels quoted for the Barracuda IV.
Submitted by Mike Chin on Fri, 2002-05-31 10:19.
News.com is reporting that IBM has developed a new technology called iBoot. Taking advantage of the new iSCSI standard, iBoot allows computers to boot from remote hard drives, located in remote locations. While IBM is targeting the technology at easing administrative burdens and increasing performance, this technology also should help reduce the noise in desktop PCs.
Submitted by Mike Chin on Thu, 2002-05-30 12:11.
Via hardware has a review of the new Shuttle SS40G. Seems shuttle have made some good attempts at silencing this version, although the db levels quoted in the review don't look that impressive. Hopefully it'll give us modders a head start though. Check out the review here.
The fact that they posted some noise readings is also encouraging. Thanks for the news, Jon!
Submitted by Mike Chin on Wed, 2002-05-29 18:21.
So says Jake in his call to silent action in our General Forum, asking folks to email, phone and write letters to retailers urging them to include noise ratings alongside their products... Lots more good ideas to promote silence awareness in the industry. Thanks, Jake!
Submitted by Mike Chin on Wed, 2002-05-29 12:30.
Consumer electricity monitors work fine to measure power consumption, but they cost upwards of US$100. It's also more than we need. Our electronics advisor Tommy Yee suggested building one really cheaply. With our shoestring budget, that sounded much better. My super simple power meter
took half an hour and $5 of parts. A very useful tool.
Submitted by Mike Chin on Tue, 2002-05-28 13:58.
For the SCSI fans out there, Fujitsu has announced a new line of SCSI hard drives using their "Fluid Dynamic Bearing" (FDB) technology. Currently, these drives are vaporware and are not expected to be available to consumers until at least September.
Submitted by Mike Chin on Mon, 2002-05-27 00:12.
Do-It-Yourself Systems | Power
Partly a review of the TK Power 300 power supply and partly a DIY quiet computer project, John Coyle's quiet computer project utilizes many components and techniques discussed in Silent PC Review: the above-mentioned PSU, VIA C3 processor, quiet Seagate Barracuda IV hard drive, Zalman fan mounts, Panaflo 80mm fans, variable fan speed contro, drive decoupling by suspension, etc. A worthy first article!